About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 3880-3888
Publication year: 2014
ISBN: 978-84-616-8412-0
ISSN: 2340-1079

Conference name: 8th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 10-12 March, 2014
Location: Valencia, Spain


A. Pereira1, S. Dhar2

1Indian School of Business (INDIA)
2www.Creati.st (INDIA)
This paper draws on the concept of “lead users” to illustrate the development of an innovative tool for interactive learning inside the classroom and the management of content and delivery outside the classroom. The lead user method for innovative products and services was first introduced by Eric Von Hippel (Von Hippel 1986); it offers an unique approach to breakthrough products and services by collecting information on market needs and solutions from “lead user” customers.

Lead users are defined as those who
(a) face needs that will become commonplace in the market, but face them far earlier than the vast majority of the market, and
(b) are positioned to benefit significantly by obtaining a solution to these needs.

Using professors of a leading business school as lead users, an entrepreneur in the field of education has built a product that delivers enhanced active learning inside the classroom, along with a learning management system that supports teaching and learning outside the classroom. Starting with the lead user professors’ “must haves” such as the ability to “lock” students in the teaching and learning application during the class sessions (and “unlock” the students, if so desired) the product addresses all the key needs of the lead users. The locking mechanism ensures that students are focused on the material at hand, and compelled to interact with the instructor and/or other students. Moreover, the application includes all expected in-class interaction features, including the ability to receive and record responses from students in real time, be they in the form of text responses, multiple choice questions, polling, or peer-to-peer sharing and collaboration. These student responses can be displayed in real time on the classroom screen, if so desired by the instructor. The value of these features is enhanced because any student response called for by the instructor—from the simplest in-class poll to complex answers—can be done so spontaneously by the instructors, based on the nature of classroom discussions, with no pre-class planning necessary. Further, students can annotate content provided for each class session, including adding notes to the instructor’s presentations.

The product is device independent and can run on any device, be it a laptop, a tablet, or a smart phone. Further, it has the added advantage of being bundled with a state of the art learning management system that includes three levels of security for documents and material that will be shared with the students; the highest level of security precludes students from printing and copying the content. For those instructors who follow the “flipped model” approach to teaching (where lectures and other forms of passive learning are taken out of the classroom, and applications, discussions and other forms of active learning are brought into the classroom), the product provides the platform for instructor lectures in the form of webcasts that will be seen by the students before they come to class. The data on student viewership of the webcasts are available to the instructor before the class sessions, so that the instructor can better manage the active learning environment inside the classroom.

[1] Von Hippel, Eric (1986) "Lead Users: A Source of Novel Product. Concepts," Management Science 32, no. 7 (July): 791-805.
author = {Pereira, A. and Dhar, S.},
series = {8th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2014 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-616-8412-0},
issn = {2340-1079},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {10-12 March, 2014},
year = {2014},
pages = {3880-3888}}
AU - A. Pereira AU - S. Dhar
SN - 978-84-616-8412-0/2340-1079
PY - 2014
Y1 - 10-12 March, 2014
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 8th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2014 Proceedings
SP - 3880
EP - 3888
ER -
A. Pereira, S. Dhar (2014) THE ENGAGED CLASSROOM: A SUCCESSFUL LEAD USER INNOVATION, INTED2014 Proceedings, pp. 3880-3888.